Money laundering is a complex issue which has been ongoing for many years globally. Developed and developing countries form anti-money laundering regime in the view to combat these ever-challenging criminal activities. Laundering of money involves the hiding and cleaning of “dirty money” derived from unlawful activities. Malaysia has come up with its own regime of anti-money laundering. Anti-Money Laundering and Anti-Terrorism Financing Act 2001 (AMLATFA) provides power to forfeit proceeds at the end of proceedings. This paper aims to investigate whether the current civil forfeiture regime in Malaysia is effective in fighting against money laundering.
This paper will be based on a doctrinal research where reliance will mainly be on relevant case laws and legislations. AMLATFA is the primary legislation which will be utilised for the purpose of analysis.
Despite the enactment of AMLATFA, little study has been carried out on the effectiveness of civil forfeiture regime under Malaysian anti-money laundering laws. Furthering into forfeiture of criminal proceeds, the findings show that forfeiture provisions are the recent law enforcement strategy to fight against crimes. It is implicit that this strategy is more efficient than the conventional approach, which only focused on punishing the individual criminal but failed to diminish the criminal operations as a whole.
Strengths and weaknesses of AMLATFA are identified where it is less comprehensive in terms of offences covered and standard of proof. With that, this paper analyses the civil forfeiture regime under the Malaysian anti-money laundering laws. This paper would also offer some guiding principles for academics, banks, their legal advisers, practitioners and policymakers, not only in Malaysia but also elsewhere. Anti-money laundering laws can further be improved by being a better and established civil forfeiture regime where Malaysia will be able to discharge its duties well on forfeiting benefits from criminals.
Aurasu, A. and Rahman, A.A. (2016), "Money laundering and civil forfeiture regime: Malaysian experience", Journal of Money Laundering Control, Vol. 19 No. 4, pp. 337-345. https://doi.org/10.1108/JMLC-08-2015-0033Download as .RIS
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